Accountability Coaching Blog | Dennis Kay

Goal Setting: Should You Be Reasonable or Go for the Absurd? Part 1 of 2

One of the reasons people don’t hire a coach is the belief they can do it on their own. This rarely happens. Fact: Goal Setting + Honest Feedback = Results.

“In order to obtain the impossible, one must attempt the absurd”
– Miguel de Cervantes”

Goal Setting: Should You Be Reasonable or Go for the Absurd? Part 1 of 2

One of the biggest reasons why people don’t hire a coach is the belief they can do it on their own.

They think they will read the books, listen to the podcasts, create the plans, do the meditating, etc. and within a few short weeks or months…BOOM! Massive success.

Let’s be honest. This rarely happens.

As Derek Sivers so accurately pointed out: “If more information was the answer, we’d all be billionaires with six-pack abs.”

The truth is, working 1:1 with a qualified coach not only gets you results but saves you time.

Working with a coach expedites growth. They help you get where you want to go faster without the struggle. This allows you to take advantage of compounding your results which can have a significant impact on your life and happiness.

So, how can you achieve your goals faster?

#1 – Ask the T.W.L Question (This, Why, Long) 

Why did I set THIS goal, and WHY is it going to take this LONG?

We set a goal based on what we feel is “reasonable” given our current set of circumstances and conditions and based on what we’ve been able to accomplish on our own in the past.

For example, if our business is generating $500k a year in gross revenue based on our current skills, marketing, advertising and key employees we may feel that setting a goal of generating $1.0m in the next 12 months is reasonable. We can wrap our heads around this. This makes sense to us. It feels doable and comfortable.

But why THIS goal? Why should it take this long? Why not double it? Or 10X it?

What if, instead of saying “I’d like my business to being generating $1.0m in revenue in 12 months”, you said “I’d like my business to be generating $2.0m in the next 6 months?

You just doubled your revenue goal in half the time.

Reasonable or Absurd?

The setting of goals shouldn’t be arbitrary. They aren’t just something we pull out of thin air and “hope for the best”. Goals should be based on real facts, real numbers.

Regarding the above example: Ask yourself these questions:

  1. What would I have to do to reach this new and we might say aggressive or “absurd” goal based on my current business methods? And how could these methods be improved upon or completely changed and updated?
  2. What would I have to learn? What kind of exposure or attention would I need to get?
  3. Who could I hire or get on my team who could help me with this? What could I outsource?
  4. What additional products or services could I offer? How could I increase my profit from each sale?
  5. Can the sales cycle be shortened? If so how and by how much?

Go through the process of mapping this all out on paper. Spend some time doing a full Pre-Mortem Analysis and a Pre-Success Analysis and focus on the resulting 80/20 in both categories.

For an example of how to do this with your health and fitness goals, click here to check out my YouTube Channel

Based on the above analysis you may see that setting the absurd goal is actually attainable. And if it is and you can make it happen how will your business change for the long term? We aren’t just talking about what you can accomplish in the next 6 months. Look forward. How will your business be operating 1 year or 5 years from now based on what you will accomplish now?

The results of expedited timing has a compounding effect.

#2 – Track in Real-Time – Then Make Quick and Rapid Adjustments

One of the reasons why it takes so long to reach some of our goals is because we aren’t tracking in real-time and making adjustments where needed. In effect, we waste time because we aren’t really paying attention.

Setting up an effective tracking system and feedback loop allows us to see the results of our actions in real time, or as close to real time as possible.

In keeping with our example of growing our business revenue let’s look at a few key pieces of information that we could track. There are several things to measure but let’s just look at two of them here.

1. How long is our sales cycle?

2. Are our marketing and advertising working along with the sales cycle and how do we know?

Let’s say your sales cycle is typically 3 months. That means, on average 90 days go by from the time when someone is first exposed to you (or your services and product) until the time they make their first purchase.

A lot can happen in these 90 days. You may give them product or service information, have several conversations with them on the phone, expose them to other satisfied customers and then, of course, there is the actual sales pitch and close.

Would it be possible to speed up this initial sales cycle to say 2 1/2 months or 2 months? What would be the result on your bottom line if the sales cycle was shortened to 45 days?

Now let’s look at our advertising.

Let’s say you start a new advertising campaign to drive traffic to your website. It could be a targeted FB ad or a new Google Adwords campaign. How would quickly would you know if it was working or if you were just flushing money down the toilet?

You might start a new campaign and start to pump some money into it. It may start to generate some “leads”. But are those leads qualified? Are the leads you get from this new source of advertising more or less likely to purchase compared to other avenues of lead generation?

(NOTE: Not all lead generation is the same)

Maybe after a few weeks, you think “This is amazing! Look at how many people are hitting my website and registering for more info”. It looks like you’re on the right path to growing your revenue.

But imagine the opposite happens. What if after a few weeks you get frustrated and think “This isn’t working” because you haven’t generated any additional sales.

Is your advertising flawed? Do you need to make any adjustments? Or do you need to let more time go by? Remember your cycle time. Are you giving the advertising enough of a chance to “work” based on your known sales cycle?

Tracking this and setting up an effective feedback loop is an art form. But it’s crucial if you want to exceed your goals in less time.

What happens if you just let the advertising go on for several months without seeing any meaningful results?

In this case, you’ve lost time. Time and money. Time and money and now you’re frustrated and you still haven’t grown your business.

Why? Because you didn’t have an effective feedback loop that allowed you to track in real-time and adjust your actions along the way.

Setting up and implementing such a feedback loop isn’t easy. There are several moving parts to each and it’s an art to get it just right. But get it right…and watch how quickly you can achieve your goals.

Thanks for reading this far. I hope it was helpful.

To learn more about how to implement an effective feedback loop, get in touch for a free consultation. Let’s chat!

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